I can easily be accused of over thinking things at the best of times. Whilst this manifests itself as a benefit when it comes to writing it sometimes comes at a cost to myself, because I often have to get quite low before I come back up again.
There are days like today where I awake with a mind that’s filled with a crippling lack of self worth.
It doesn’t matter that I know logically that this is just a passing moment in time because deep down today I feel overwhelmed by fears and insecurities that have followed me around for years.
As much as I always hope they’re gone – and that they’ve been replaced by positivity or wiped away with my new lease of life they’re not really.
I’m always crestfallen when I find them still hidden in the background and I’m reminded again that my mother really did a number on me.
She left me with so much numbness in the place in my heart where there should be familial love and warmth that sometimes (on days like today) it feels like there’s a physical lump in my mind.
I try whenever I consciously think about her to will love into my heart and re-format everything about her memory.
I don’t want to feel anger or bitterness towards her because it’s unresolvable and it just diminishes me. I can’t open a door and ask her why she treated me like a possession or made me feel so worthless.
I’ll never be able to make her understand how hard it’s been to clamber out from under the weight of guilt that I feel for not missing her and instead feeling relief that she’s no longer alive.
I can’t get her to put her arms around me and hug me like she meant it any more in death than I could in life – and today – at this moment I just feel sad and angry.
I don’t feel any sadness that she’s been dead for two years now – I just feel angry that I was cheated out of the nurturing support that I should have had in life. I feel resentment that I turned to all manner of bad habits to expunge the pain that she directly or indirectly caused and I feel cheated out of the life that I deserved.
I see other people grieving when they lose a parent and although I understand loss (I’ve experienced the pain of someone that’s close to me dying) I can’t relate to what it must feel like to lose someone that shaped your childhood and youth into a positive and productive life.
I can only understand the final, guilty relief associated with a burden that’s been too heavy for too long being lifted from my shoulders.
Maybe I’ll never get over feeling like I don’t measure up to my own expectations or that I’m not good enough.
I hope not.
I hope that one day the memory of her voice (that seems indelibly burned into my brain) as she called me ‘sick, wicked and evil’ and the familiar look of disgust in her eyes will finally be forgotten.
I hope that one day in darker moments I won’t look back and think that she was right and that there’s something wrong with me.
Again – logically I know this is nonsense. She said these things whilst simultaneously telling me that she was being bitten by fleas irradiated by the Chernobyl disaster – which is not the product of a mind on an even keel.
All of this makes rational sense to me – but on an emotional level there are days like today when all I feel is crippling pain inside and when I could (if I chose to) obliterate myself in any number of ways.
I could eat to excess. I have a fridge full of food.
I could drink myself to oblivion. There’s a shop full of cider just over the road.
I could pick up a pouch of tobacco and roll myself a cigarette and keep smoking until all of the wonderfully scented 25g of Golden Virgina was gone along with my health.
Today it’s hard not to do all three – but I refuse.
I refuse not because I don’t want to – but because I do.
I’m thankfully also very very stubborn and I will not under any circumstances be diminished any more by her either in life or death.
Her power to make me less of a man than I should be is something that she’s no longer able to wield and whilst her memory may make me occasionally weak I’ve come further than she ever expected or told me I could.
Furthermore I did it all despite her.
For the time being I’m going to allow myself the luxury of not trying to think fondly of her. I’m also going to try and focus on my continuing gradual weight loss and the newspaper cutting that a kind member of my slimming world group brought in today to show everyone.
There are things to be thankful for – and the kindness of others makes feeling like I do at this exact moment bearable.
I have good friends and that’s a comfort.
Today though I’m just going to open the floodgates and let it all go before getting on with life.
She may have been troubled, she may have been mentally ill. She may have had a hard life and had good reason to have problems. There may be mitigating circumstances that surrounded her childhood that can explain or give cause for her behaviour.
I don’t care though today.
Today I’m remembering her the way she was in life.
She was bitter, resentful, hateful, unforgiving, deceitful, abusive and I should have no reason to feel guilt for not missing her.